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Home > Movies > The Dictator
The Dictator
The Dictator (2012)
4.5
(18 Ratings)
3 Reviews | 11 Short Comments | 316 Collectors | 75 Times Watched

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Movie Info
Movie Year:
Director:
Larry Charles
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Movie Year:
2012
Cast:
Anna FarisBen KingsleyMegan FoxJ.B. SmooveKevin CorriganAasif MandviJohn C. ReillySacha Baron CohenJason MantzoukasBobby LeeOlivia DudleyAdeel AkhtarJim Piddock
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Screenplay:
Sacha Baron CohenAlec Berg
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Genre:
Comedy,
Studio:
Paramount Pictures
Genre:
Action/Adventure
Other
Horror/Suspense
Television
Romance
Sci-Fi/Fantasy
Thriller
Animation
Comedy
Documentary
Drama
Kids/Family
Studio:
DVD Release:
2012/08/21
Theater Release:
2012/05/16
Blu-ray Release:
2012/08/21
Blu-ray 3D Release:
No release information.
DVD Release:
(ex. 2002/10/21)
Synopsis:
Tagline:
The heroic story of a dictator who risks his life to ensure that democracy would never come to the country he so lovingly oppressed.
 
Reviews
Aug 31, 2012
General Aladeen (Sasha Baron Cohen), dictator of the Republic of Wadiya, loves to oppress his people and fight democracy. His whole purpose in life se ...
General Aladeen (Sasha Baron Cohen), dictator of the Republic of Wadiya, loves to oppress his people and fight democracy. His whole purpose in life seems to be to bring attention to himself, and life a life of luxury taking advantage of all the benefits of capitalism without any of the work. Rich oil reserves set him up for a life on Easy Street. But some people would like to end his role, so while in the US on a visit, his all female crack lifeguard force protects him for all the bad things that could be coming his way including a usurper and those who want him dead.

Has Sasha Cohen jumped the shark?[For the meaning of this term, click here.] In my opinion, he is a has-been. Sorry, but he has attempted to offend everyone possible, and there’s no one else to pick on, so he’s back making fun of the Arab’s again. There are about 2 1/2 decent gags in this film, and all of those were in the preview. I was actually pretty anxious to see this film, and almost went to the theater to catch it so I wouldn’t have to wait. Boy am I glad I didn’t burn my hard earned cash on this waste of time. It just really seemed pointless to me. Naturally he has to pull out the body double bit, all the way back from Mark Twain’s “The Prince and the Pauper”. It’s not very unique here, it’s the same-old same-old.

I like slap stick, and I love puns and verbal play. I enjoy impressions and character sketches. But there’s really nothing here we haven’t seen over and over again from this guy. His stunt with Ryan Seacrest on the red carpet at the Oscar’s was dumb and not funny, and the film is even worse. Trust me that “sight gag” is hysterical compared to most of the stuff on this film. I was really sorely disappointed and very, very bored throughout the whole thing. I have to say, I was impressed with his first film, and the second one, though not nearly as good has some really funny stuff in it and it was over the top offensive. This one is very stale, and it just annoying. Woody Allen did this kind of stuff even better way back in the 70′s. If you haven’t been sucked in to this yet, please avoid it. If you go ahead, don’t blame me, cause I warned you. This guy needs to come up with something new. This isn’t it.

==Written by Ed Goettman ==

==From: Ed's Review Dot Com (www.edsreview.com)==

May 24, 2012
Sacha Baron Cohen is no stranger to the absurd. After three progressively ridiculous films, Ali G Indahouse, Boratand Bruno, all of which were based o ...
Sacha Baron Cohen is no stranger to the absurd. After three progressively ridiculous films, Ali G Indahouse, Boratand Bruno, all of which were based on characters from his HBO program, Da Ali G Show, it’s clear the man has no limit. He’ll go anywhere and everywhere if it means he’ll get a laugh, even if that means pushing the boundaries beyond what many would deem tasteful. What those people fail to see, however, is the biting satire hiding beneath its immature and offensive veneer. His show as well as his films (Ali G Indahousenotwithstanding) have displayed unimaginable examples of racism, homophobia, religious bigotry and more through a mockumentary style where the camera is turned on us, exposing the more hateful thoughts some of us manage to disgracefully conjure up. His latest film, The Dictator, abandons that mockumentary style and, transitively, much of its satirical bite. Save for a few inspired moments, The Dictator is more absurd comedy than social commentary, but it’s one that is undeniably funny, right on par with 21 Jump Street as the funniest movie of the year.

The tagline for The Dictator reads as such: “The heroic story of a dictator who risks his life to ensure that democracy would never come to the country he so lovingly oppressed.” If you find humor in that sentence, this movie is right up your alley—no further convincing should be needed—but I’ll continue on for those who want a bit more background. Baron Cohen plays Admiral General Aladeen, the dictator of the fictional North African country of Wadiya. He’s in the process of creating nuclear weapons, which the United Nations isn’t too happy about. In response, they demand he address them regarding his plans for the weapons, so he heads off to America. However, his backstabbing advisor, Tamir (Ben Kingsley) has plans of his own and orders to have him killed. After escaping his seemingly inevitable death (now without a beard—his single most defining trait), he learns of a double being used to eventually sign a constitution that will bring democracy to Wadiya. He can’t let that happen, so he begins working at a hippie, left wing shop run by a feminist named Zoey (Anna Faris) that is catering the event in the hopes of infiltrating it, taking back his rightful place as dictator and assuring his people don’t receive democratic freedom.

It’s understandable to bring some hesitance into a viewing of The Dictator. One of the main reasons Baron Cohen’s two best films are so good is due to their approach. They followed only the most thinly mapped out stories and allowed the comedy to surface not so much based on Cohen’s presence, but more so on the reaction of the unwitting participants to what he was actually doing. The same can be said for the satire, as shocking and disgusting as some of it may have been. By throwing himself into precarious situations that yielded interesting (and sometimes dangerous) results, Cohen was able to point out flaws in our actions and beliefs. Leaving all that behind could have led to a movie that felt too safe, one that stuck too closely to a script and didn’t allow his sensational improvisational skills to shine, but such is not the case.The Dictator doesn’t necessarily feel scripted—the string of events in this movie are so bizarre, they feel more like random happenstances—and the ad-libbing remains intact. The narrative dialogue that must be said for the story to progress is never prominent enough to overshadow some of the film’s on-the-spot vocal concoctions.

Whether Admiral General Aladeen is learning the joys of self pleasure or giving a speech about what’s possible in a dictatorship, (of which all were done in the democratic America), the end result is almost always hilarious. What disappoints the most about The Dictator isn’t that the expected commentary isn’t there, but rather that it tries to be there, but isn’t fleshed out enough to work. It occasionally brings forth the wretchedness of many people’s discriminatory behavior, but those themes were explored more thoughtfully in his previous films. Although a spoof on dictators and dictatorships in general, it too fails to make any real point about them, instead only pointing out the obvious, like the superiority complexes that can rightfully be assigned to any dictator. Not every movie has to include an enlightening take on a particular subject—leaving it out is just fine if you have a technical prowess behind the production—but including it and failing is something worth addressing. That unfortunately happens here.

Still, The Dictator delivers on the laughs so frequently that you don’t miss the commentary that was featured so prominently in Borat and Bruno. Sacha Baron Cohen is once again fearless with his performance, proving he’s a force to be reckoned with in the comedic world and the soundtrack, which is full of Middle Eastern renditions of popular American songs like Dr. Dre’s “The Next Episode,” is so offensive you can’t help but laugh at it. I may never look at Forrest Gump the same way ever again, but that’s a small price to pay to laugh as much as I did while watching The Dictator.

The Dictator receives 4/5

==Written by Josh Hylton ==

==From: Josh Hylton Movies (www.joshhylton.com)==

Since Adolf Hitler had the audacity to borrow his mustache from the most famous celebrity in the world--Charlie Chaplin--it meant Hitler was fair game for Chaplin's comedy. (Strangely, the two men were born within four days of each other.) The Great Dictator, conceived in the late thirties but not released until 1940, when Hitler's war was raging across Europe, is the film that skewered the tyrant. Chaplin plays both Adenoid Hynkel, the power-mad ruler of Tomania, and a humble Jewish barber suffering under the dictator's rule. Paulette Goddard, Chaplin's wife at the time, plays the barber's beloved; and the rotund comedian Jack Oakie turns in a weirdly accurate burlesque of Mussolini, as a bellowing fellow dictator named Benzino Napaloni, Dictator of Bacteria. Chaplin himself hits one of his highest moments in the amazing sequence where he performs a dance of love with a large inflated globe of the world. Never has the hunger for world domination been more rhapsodically expressed. The slapstick is swift and sharp, but it was not enough for Chaplin. He ends the film with the barber's six-minute speech calling for peace and prophesying a hopeful future for troubled mankind. Some critics have always felt the monologue was out of place, but the lyricism and sheer humanity of it are still stirring. This was the last appearance of Chaplin's Little Tramp character, and not coincidentally it was his first all-talking picture. --Robert Horton
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Movie Disc Details
Disc Version:

Runtime:

89

DVD Region:

1, 4

Disc Type:

DVD

Aspect Ratio:

16:9

Video Format:

MPEG-2

Parental Control:

1

Video Signal:

NTSC

Layers:

2

Subtitles:

Portuguese (Brazil)

Spanish (Spain, Traditional Sort)

French (France)

English (United States)

Sound Mix:

Dolby Digital

Dolby Digital

Dolby Digital

Dolby Digital

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